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Saturday, May 30, 2015


Tanzanite, 18k gold pendant with diamond accent
The summer weather seems to have reached us finally, and somewhat abruptly, and I have switched (most of the time) from my more formal clothing to my Hawaiian shirts for the season.  Apparently the one I wore the other day was blinding because almost everyone commented on it.  However, what some of you may not know because I wear so many vests these days, during the rest of the year I wear suspenders almost every single day.  All of my suspenders are made by a company called Trafalgar and they are all from their limited edition collection.  Needless to say they aren't inexpensive (although this is relative---when almost all of your clothing is custom made for you, they don't really seem like they cost that much) but I love the wonderful designs they do and I wear them all the time.  When you wear something all the time, stuff happens.  Connections get worn and frayed, material tears, parts don't work as well. 

A few years ago though my wife found out that we could send back the suspenders to the company and after a few weeks they would come back to us completely repaired and (almost) like new again.  And there was absolutely no charge!  The only thing we paid for was the shipping to the company (not the return shipping).  What an amazing company!  I mean what other company would offer a service like this???

Oh wait a minute,  I do!!*  Yes I actually fix my jewelry for free, including resizings, repointing of prongs, replacing worn bezels, and anything that just breaks.  Can you say that you know of any other companies that do this? 

 I can't tell you how many times I get young, newly engaged customers in here who have engagement rings they bought elsewhere that don't fit and they tell me that the store they bought them from won't resize them for free or will only do it once.  Is that truly the kind of store you want to buy your fine jewelry from ? 

*(Disclaimer: I won't pay for return shipping---unless the error is mine---as the costs involved for shipping and insuring jewelry is more expensive than suspenders.)

The pendant pictured above is a new piece I just put out with a very, very cool tanzanite.  It is cut in a buff top cut which means that the back of the stone is faceted but the top is cut smooth like a cabochon cut stone.  It is a very blue tanzanite and it looks a lot like you're looking into a pool of water when you look into the stone. 

My next posting is going to be about pearls because I recently saw one of my pearl suppliers who I don't get to see often and I got some amazing new strands in that I should have pictures of soon and that are quite unique.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Tequila and Diamonds, Cheese and Sapphires

Different shaped red and white stone necklace
Rainbow moonstones, garnets and 18k gold
As many of you probably know by now I like tequila.  I recently bought a bottle of my current favorite (Clase Azul Reposado) and my wife and I were sitting down for the cocktail hour with that (well she was having a gin and tonic) and some cheese.  Since I kind of live and breathe jewelry, it's never far from my mind and I began musing on how fine the tequila was and how that related to the diamonds I sell.  I was thinking about how I really only needed one shot of this tequila because it was so fine that every sip made me happy.  How the heck does this relate to the diamonds I sell, you are probably wondering (actually you may be wondering how much tequila I had before this thought came to me!).  It does in fact.  The diamonds I sell, Lazare Diamonds, are all cut to the American Ideal cut and are consistently the most lively and sparkly diamonds you will see out there. You should also know by now that I only sell top color diamonds so they are also always as white as they can be.  And the great thing about these two factors is that you don't need a huge diamond for it to be amazing looking.  My half carat diamonds will always look better than a larger poorly cut, lower color, stone.  So in the case of my diamonds, as with the tequila, less really is more!

Don't get me wrong.  If you want a big diamond, I'm happy to get it for you.  I just sold a stunning 1.70 ct., "F" color, VVS1 clarity (almost flawless!) Lazare Diamond just the other day.  But you
certainly don't need a large one to have an equally spectacular stone.

Now let's get on to the cheese.  I was having some Comte that I had picked up at Whole Foods.  Normally when I need a good cheese I head over to Formaggio's Kitchen, a small cheese shop (the only cheese store in America with a cheese cave underneath it!), and get what I want because they consistently have the best cheese in the area.  And as it happens, I particularly like Comte, so I buy it often.  However when I cut into the Comte from Whole Foods, it immediately became apparent that it was nowhere near the quality of what comes from Formaggio's.  The piece of cheese broke in half (Comte is a fairly dense cheese and I had never had a piece do this before) immediately, the color was off and quite frankly the taste was completely bland and nothing at all like the ones I get from Formaggio's.  I went back and looked at the wrapper and realized I was paying the same price per pound as I would have at Formaggio's!

So how does this relate to jewelry?  First of all the fact that Formaggio's is a small operation allows them to more individually source their product.  They often know their suppliers personally, they are fussy about what they will take, and they actually check each piece of their product when it comes in.  This directly relates to the way that I purchase the colored stones that I buy.  I know my suppliers personally (some I have known for almost 40 years), they know what the quality is I am looking for and won't even bother sending me stuff they know isn't up to my standards and I actually check each stone that comes into my hands personally.  When you buy from a chain operation, or even from a jeweler who simply doesn't make their own work but just buys finished goods from their various suppliers, you will never get this kind of attention to detail.  So you may be able to find sapphires that are larger and priced the same as my smaller ones, but you will not get the quality you can get from someone like me.

I'd continue my analogies into the actual meal we ate, but I'm starting to get hungry with all of this food talk and dinner is still quite far in the future.  But by now, I'm sure you get the idea!